Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York:
Even though hedge funds have had a hard time outperforming the S&P500 this year, they are still on pace to beat 2012 returns according to new research from eVestment. Hedge funds rose an average of 1.7% in September, ending Q3 up 2.4%, and have returned an average of 5.7% through the first nine months of 2013. On an annualized basis the industry is on pace to return 7.7% in 2013, slightly ahead of 2012’s 7.2% increase.
In terms of strategies, performance in September and Q3 was dragged down once again by managed futures, FX and commodity strategies. With systematic strategies removed (the majority of these universes are systematic), the hedge fund industry would be on pace to exceed 11% in 2013. Long/short equity is on pace for their best year since 2009 and second best since 2006. In both those prior years the universe beat the S&P 500.
Macro strategies are flat for the year so far, giving them a slight edge over managed futures which have been largely negative. "There has been an anomaly in recent
months between large and small funds in the universe," writes Peter Laurelli, VP and head of research, eVestment.
While large macro managers are on pace for positive
returns for the year and their smaller counterparts are
negative, since the rate shift in May performance has
been noticeably more volatile for large funds, highlighting
their exposure to interest rate markets."
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